Punjabi, Urdu, Hindi, Persian, [Arabic]: firaaq

Discussion in 'Indo-Iranian Languages' started by Qureshpor, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    The word "firaaq" has come up in another thread where I mentioned a quote from a renowned Urdu Ghazal poet, Firaq Gorakhpuri. As a bit of additional information I provided "firaaq"'s meaning, that being "separation [of lovers]". It seems there is a difference in Urdu and Hindi usage for this word.

    Urdu Ghazal has its own set of "conventions". One of these is the beloved is cruel who tortures the lover in more ways than one. The lover pines for union (visaal) with his beloved but knowing his luck, he seems always to be in a state of "firaaq" (separation/being away from)! So, this meaning in Urdu (and I know it is the same in Punjabi and Persian poetry) is quite a specialised, Ghazal based meaning. In Hindi poetry, if I am not mistaken, the same concept is conveyed by "birhaa", which is also used by Urdu poets in their "giit" poetry.

    Please come up with usages of "firaaq" within the context of your language.
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2013
  2. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    As I said earlier, "firaaq" in Hindi primarily means waiting; you are right that it is "virah/viraiha/birah/birhaa" that takes up the 'separation of lover' meaning in Hindi. A very common sentence in Hindi would be like "maiN kab se teri firaaq meiN baiThii hooN" (not necessarily a lover saying this; for example, a mother could say this to a son) - "firaaq" usually conveys a bit of an anguished or tense wait, not too much but a little bit; or sometimes an impatient wait.

    "kisi kii firaaq meN baiThnaa" is a common expression, in fact, in Hindi. It did suprise me that there's such a wide difference in meaning between Urdu and Hindi (by which I mean the usual Hindi; ghazal-based Hindi might take the Urdu meaning) for a word that is anyway somewhat literary in both languages (in my experience, when a literary word shares both Urdu and Hindi, then usually the meaning remains the same).
  3. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    It is interesting to note that this word in Urdu is masculine - yet another difference.
  4. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English
    The following Hindi dictionary says this:

    फिरा/क़ fira:q (nm) separation; ~क़े- यार separation from the beloved; ~क़ में इश्क तड़पता है separation sharpens love.

    Then there is also this:

    फिराक phira:k (nm) expectancy (for), looking for, waiting for, keeping a watch for; worry, anxiety; search.

    Looks like we might be back at the f/ph issue again!
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2013
  5. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    This is interesting! In the first entry, the Devanagri shows a "ph" but the roman spelling has an "f". But ph/f should not change its meaning although it apparently does so. These entries do give the gender as masculine, as per Urdu.

    Edit: I've just checked "Farhang-i-Asifiyyah". It gives the meaning that I have provided AND it also gives a meaning which it describes as "colloquial". Under this meaning, the words given are:

    fikr, chintaa, xayaal, dhun
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2013
  6. Alfaaz Senior Member

    Interesting thread. It was surprising to read that فراق/firaaq is used in Hindi. Many Hindi speakers didn't seem to be familiar with the word and asked what it meant when the movie released and also when used in song lyrics. It would be interesting to hear what someone like forum member JH would have to say about firaaq, as greatbear seems (from his answers in previous threads) to have greater familiarity with Urdu words/poetry.
    Agree, birhaa was the first word that came to mind for Hindi before reading through the posts of this thread. Lyrics from an Urdu film Naag aur Naagin (1976) (which had lots of Hindi words, especially for lyrics):

    ساون کے دن آئے بالم ، جھلا کون جھلائے
    ہر ڈالی لہرائے بالم ، جھولا کون جھلائے
    کتنی رتوں نے تڑپایا ہے ، کتنے ساون بیتے ہیں
    اور کوئی ہوتا مر جاتا ، ہم ہیں جو اب تک جیتے ہیں
    برہا اگن جلائے بالم جھلا کون جھلائے
    سیف الدین سیف
    saavan ke din aaye baalam, jhulaa kaun jhulaa'e
    har Daali lehraa'e baalam, jhulaa kahun jhulaa'e
    kitni rutoN ne taRpaayaa hai, kitne saavan beete haiN
    aur koi hotaa mar jaataa, hum haiN jo ab tak jeete haiN
    birhaa agan jalaa'e baalam, jhulaa kaun jhulaa'e
    Saif-ud-Deen Saif
    فلم :غرناطہ
    میں ہوں یہاں ، تو ہے وہاں ؛ ہیں درمیاں یہ فاصلے ، یہ وادیاں
    اگل رہا ہے آسماں ، فراق یار ، فراق یار کا سما
    پکارتے ہیں دو جہاں ، صداء تو دے ، صداء تو دے تو ہیں کہاں
    تنویر نقوی
    Film: Gharnaatah (1971)
    meiN hooN yahaaN, tu hai wahaaN ; haiN darmiyaaN yeh faaSile , yeh waadiyaaN
    ugal raha hai aasmaaN , firaaq-e-yaar , firaaq-e-yaar kaa samaa
    pukaarte hain do jahaaN , Sadaa' to de , Sadaa' to de tu hai kahaaN
    Tanweer Naqwi

    میری زندگی تو فراق ہے، وہ ازل سے دل میں مکیں سہی
    وہ نگاہِ شوق سے دور ہیں، رگِ جاں سے لاکھ قریں سہی
    سرِ طور ہو سرِ حشر ہو، ہمیں انتظار قبول ہے
    وہ کبھی ملیں، وہ کہیں ملیں، وہ کبھی سہی وہ کہیں سہی
    نصیر الدین نصیر
    Meri zindagi to firaaq hai, woh azal se dil meiN makeeN sahi
    woh nigaah-e-shauq se door haiN, rag-e-jaaN se laakh qareeb sahi
    sar-e-Toor ho sar-e-Hashr ho, humeiN intizaar qubuul hai
    woh kabhi mileN, woh kaheeN mileN, woh kabhi sahi woh kaheeN sahi
    Naseer-ud-Deen Naseer
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2013
  7. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Forum members will most certainly be pleased (and perhaps even surprised) to read this thread. I would like to draw all our friends' attention especially to the posts by Afzal SaaHib, UVR SaaHib and Jamil SaaHib. The combined result of their input is that, apart from "firaaq"'s original meaning, it has indeed acquired the secondary meaning/s being discussed in this thread (as per posts 2 and 5) and that not only in Hindi but also in Urdu. Although there is a suggestion/query that this secondary meaning might be a recent development, Farhang-i-Asifiyyah (published 1908) provides a clear proof that this meaning is quite old!


    You will also see that its feminine gender (for the second meaning) has been elucidated by UVR SaaHib.
  8. Faylasoof Senior Member

    Plato's Republic
    English (UK) & Urdu (Luckhnow), Hindi
    فراق firaaq has more than one usage in Urdu and comprises the following meanings:
    جدائی judaa’i = separation
    ہجر ِ محبوب hijr-e-maHbuub = lover’s separation
    فكر\ خیال fikr / xayaal = anguish , anxiety
    تاك taak = wait (for something / one); search; concern; ambush (كمين kamiin , گھات g-haat)

    All of the above are in use with the poetic use of firaaq primarily to mean ہجر ِ محبوب hijr-e-maHbuub = lover’s separation:

    ذکرِ شبِ فراق سے وحشت اسے بھی تھی
    میری طرح کسی سے محبت اسے بھی تھی
    مجھ کو بھی شوق تھا نئے چہروں کی دید کا
    رستہ بدل کے چلنے کی عادت اسے بھی تھی
    محسن نقوی

    Zikr-e-shab-e-firaaq se waHshat use bhii thii

    merii TarH kisii se muHabbat use bhii thii
    mujh ko bhii shauq thaa na’e chehroN kii diid kaa
    rastah badal ke chalne kii 3aadat use bhii thii
    Muhsin Naqvi
  9. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    ^ In Hindi, it is primarily the meanings of taak and fikr that are associated with firaaq. The thread has been a very interesting and informative one for me, thanks to all!
  10. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Faylasoof SaaHib, one thing is not clear from your post. In Urdu, is "firaaq" ever used in the feminine?
  11. Faylasoof Senior Member

    Plato's Republic
    English (UK) & Urdu (Luckhnow), Hindi
    QP SaaHib, I’ve almost always seen it treated as masculine though for some nouns gender was not settled in either Delhi or Lucknow speech. So some people do use it as feminine!

    Some prose usages of firaaq to mean search/ look for or wait for:
    مجھے ہمیشہ اسی كی جستجو تھی اور اسی فراق میں میں جولاں نكلا
    mujhe hameshah isii kii justujuu thii aur isii firaaq meN maiN jaulaaN niklaa
    It was this I was always after and (it was) for this I went searching in haste

    آج تڑكے صبح سے وہ گیا ہے جس وجہ سے میں اسكے \ اسكی فراق میں بیٹھا ہوں
    aaj taRke SubH se woh gayaa hae jis wajh (wajah) se main uske / uskii firaaq meN baiTha huuN
    He went very early in the morning which is why I’m sitting waiting for him

    شكارچی اپنے شكار كے \ كی فراق میں كمین گاہ میں چوكنا بیٹھا تھا
    shikaarchii apne shikaar ke / kii firaaq meN kamiin-gaah meN chaukannaa baiThaa thaa
    The hunter sat alert / vigilant in his ambush waiting for his prey

    BTW, we always use it as masculine!

    Poetic usage is as discussed by us earlier – lover’s separation. Some examples:

    وہ فراق اور وہ وصال کہاں
    وہ شب و روز و ماہ و سال کہاں

    نہیں کہ مجھ کو قیامت کا اعتقاد نہیں
    شبِ فراق سے روزِ جزا زیاد نہیں

    These lines of Ghalib above don't clarify the gender but Faraz’s verse below makes clear that he treated it as a masculine noun by saying firaaq thaa just like qurb thaa - and qurb is masculine too:

    ترا قرب تھا کہ فراق تھا وہی تیری جلوہ گری رہی
    کہ جو روشنی ترے جسم کی تھی مرے بدن میں بھری رہی
    مرے ناقدوں نے فرازؔ جب مرا حرف حرف پرکھ لیا
    تو کہا کہ عہدِ ریا میں بھی جو بات کھری تھی کھری رہی
  12. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    Alfaaz SaaHib, if I just may, I'd call these words Indic, not Hindi. The meaning of ہندی hindii when used in Urdu dictionaries pointing to the etymological part is Indic, not Hindi. All of the words in this song are very much Urdu (of course they may and are most probably shared by Hindi).
  13. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    I was reading today the back of the cover of the DVD of the 2008 movie Firaaq; the first line is that "... Firaaq, which means both separation and quest".

    Also see here: "Firaaq means both separation and quest in Arabic."

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